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John Choong

Partner

Disputes, litigation and arbitration, Global investigations

John Choong is a well-reputed arbitrator handling disputes in a broad array of sectors. He has notable expertise in ICC proceedings and other cross-border cases. Clients consider it to be 'his ability to communicate well that singles him out,' remarking that he 'expresses particular ideas clearly and concisely and gets across his message.'

Chambers Asia-Pacific 2018

Profile details

About John Choong

John has over two decades of experience acting as trusted adviser to leading Fortune 500 companies, on their most complex and significant dispute resolution matters.  John has a special focus on international arbitration, cross-border investigations and dispute resolution matters with an Asian connection.  

John heads our award-winning China International Arbitration practice, and he was named "International Arbitation Lawyer of the Year" for Asia-Pacific in the Benchmark Litigation Awards 2022.  

John has represented clients on a wide range of international commercial and investment arbitrations, including a number of complex billion-dollar arbitrations. John has also handled numerous investigations and regulatory/compliance matters, including sensitive, high-profile matters that have resulted in successful resolutions.  

John is a Chartered Arbitrator and a fellow with the leading institutes of arbitrators. He has been appointed Council or committee member on a number of leading legal bodies.  He is also author or Editor of books published by Oxford University Press and Sweet & Maxwell, and is a General Arbitration Editor of the Hong Kong White Book.  John has been an adjunct professor with The University of Hong Kong LLM in Arb course. 

John is regularly appointed as presiding arbitrator, sole arbitrator or co-arbitrator in arbitrations under the leading rules, including the ICC, LCIA, UNCITRAL and HKIAC rules. 

Recent work

  • Successfully defending a leading Fortune 100 company on a billion USD arbitration involving a joint venture spanning 20 years, with significant disputes of fact and law.  
  • Acting in a $300m+ Hong Kong ICC arbitration relating to a complex PRC joint venture dispute.
  • Advising a global biopharmaceutical company on investigations in China by the US Department of Justice and Securities and Exchange Commission relating to the US Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, involving a range of anti-bribery/corruption allegations.
  • Acting for a leading multinational in successfully resolving a wide-ranging dispute involving claims of serious mismanagement and warranty breaches in their China business, which ultimately resulted in a successful global settlement involving over 30 parties.
  • Advising a multinational engineering company in a series of investigations in Asia, involving allegations of misconduct and collusion between staff and distributors, and in dealing with the related exposure under foreign laws, including the UK Bribery Act and the US Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.

Qualifications

Memberships

  • Chartered Arbitrator, UK Chartered Institute of Arbitrators
  • Fellow, UK Chartered Institute of Arbitrators
  • Fellow, Hong Kong Institute of Arbitrators
  • Fellow, Singapore Institute of Arbitrators
  • Fellow, Asian Institute of Alternative Dispute Resolution

Councils/Committees

  • Hong Kong Government's Advisory Committee on Promotion of Arbitration
  • Hong Kong International Arbitration Centre F&A Committee
  • International Chamber of Commerce
  • Hong Kong Institute of Arbitrators Council
  • SIAC Users Council National Committee (Hong Kong)
  • ICC Belt and Road Commission (Ambassador)
  • ICC Task Force on the New York Convention (Singapore country rapporteur) 
  • Founding member, HK45 arbitration group
  • Director, HK Arbitration Charity Ball Limited

Professional qualifications

  • Solicitor, Hong Kong SAR
  • Solicitor, England and Wales
  • Advocate and solicitor, Singapore (currently a non-practising member)
  • DipICArb, UK Chartered Institute of Arbitrators

Publications

  • A Guide to the SIAC Arbitration Rules (2nd ed., Oxford Univ Press)
  • Hong Kong Arbitration Ordinance: Commentary and Annotations (2nd ed., Sweet and Maxwell)
  • Asia Arbitration Handbook (Oxford Univ Press)
  • General Arbitration Editor, Hong Kong White Book (Thomson Reuters)
  • General Editor, Asian Dispute Review

Publications

  • International arbitration in 2022

  • Sweet & Maxwell, 2nd edition (co-editor) Hong Kong Arbitration Ordinance: Commentary and Annotations

  • Oxford University Press (co-editor) Asia Arbitration Handbook

  • Oxford University Press, 2nd edition (co-author) A Guide to the SIAC Arbitration Rules

  • General Arbitration Editor Hong Kong White Book